Pencoed is fast becoming one of the most cycling-friendly towns in Wales.
With more than three miles worth of designated traffic-free cycle routes, on-road cycle routes and paths for cutting through housing estates, together with other road safety measures, there’s never been a safer time for Pencoed residents to swap their cars for a two wheel journey instead.
The town even has a special ‘glow in the dark’ path through the Woodlands playing fields which emits a gentle glow to guide cyclists and walkers during the winter months!
To help raise awareness of all the routes, a brand new ‘Active Travel’ map has been produced by Bridgend County Borough Council and Sustrans, in partnership with Pencoed Town Council.
The maps are being given out to pupils at Pencoed Comprehensive School and all of its partner primary schools, while copies will also be made available for local residents via the town council.
The most recent ‘Active Travel’ investment in the town by Bridgend County Borough Council, using grant funding from Welsh Government, has seen the pavement along the western side of Coychurch Road widened to create a cycleway/footway.
The completion of that missing link means that there is now a traffic-free route running all the way from Coychurch to the school gates at Pencoed Comprehensive School.
The Leader, Cllr Huw David said:
“We are very grateful to the Welsh Government for their continuing financial support through the Safe Routes in Communities programme. Following successful funding applications made by the council, more than £1.5m worth of Active Travel improvements have been made in Pencoed over the past three years.
“Active Travel improvements take time, energy and money, but we are excited that an extensive network of safe cycling and walking routes is coming together in Pencoed and other parts of Bridgend County Borough.
“We will continue bidding for additional funding to make improvements. We want to do everything possible to make it easier for people to leave their cars at home and choose a healthier, greener form of travel for shorter everyday journeys as part of their daily routine, and set a trend that can be continued by future generations.”
Cllr David added:
“Climate change is obviously a global challenge, but here in Pencoed the local community have told us that they are keen to embrace active forms of travel so that they can do their bit to help reduce carbon emissions. The active travel improvements will also help contribute to our aims for improving wellbeing in the county borough as it is now much safer and easier for people in Pencoed to go out for a quick walk, scoot or cycle.”
Cllr Richard Young, Cabinet Member for Communities said:
“One of the key features of the work in Pencoed which I’m particularly proud of is the fact that schoolchildren have been heavily involved right throughout the entire process. There are huge amounts of enthusiasm throughout the local school community to travel actively.
“Schoolchildren initially told us which routes they were using most for their everyday journeys on foot or two wheels, and identified any barriers which were preventing them and their families from cycling or walking more. They then suggested which new paths, safer crossings and other road safety measures they wanted to see created. Their views, and feedback from other local residents who took part in our public consultations on the matter, all helped to influence the improvements that we have delivered so far as well as the production of the new Active Travel maps.
“This scheme forms part of the wider Bridgend to Pencoed Technology Park active travel route and so in the future, residents who wish to cycle to and from Bridgend from Pencoed, and vice versa, will be able to do so seamlessly.”